Workers and Workplaces

Supporting Professional Success

A nation’s economy is only as strong as its workforce. Business leaders say social-emotional skills are essential to achieving business success.

Relationship-building, problem-solving, collaboration, and assertiveness—all commonly known as skills for success—are highly sought after in today’s workforce. Job-specific skills learned through education and training change over time, but the skills taught in social-emotional learning, or SEL programs, are timeless.

Laying the foundation of SEL in education has positive, long-term benefits in children’s lives. Studies show that students not only have demonstrable improvements in academic success, and positive outcomes in school and in life, but also are better equipped to succeed professionally with workplace readiness skills.

Workplace Readiness Skills and Social-Emotional Learning

How does SEL prepare employees for opportunity? With social-emotional learning, kids gain valuable career-long skills.

Executive Functions: Why They’re Skills for a Lifetime

The skills that help us set goals, make plans, stay on task, and carry out tasks successfully—known as executive-function skills—aren't innate, but they can be taught.

Social-Emotional Skills Are Workplace Readiness Skills

Highly valued by companies and potential employers, SEL prepares tomorrow's workforce by instilling these competencies:


Emotion Management

Emotion Recognition

Solving Problems

Impulse Control

Calming Down



Research for SEL Is Key

Learn more about why social-emotional skills are important in employability, professional advancement, and company success.

The Evidence Base for How We Learn: Supporting Students’ Social, Emotional, and Academic Development

The Aspen Institute

“Employers recognize that social and emotional development, along with content knowledge, is crucial to preparing the future workforce with the life skills employers increasingly need and value.”

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This Time, with Feeling: Integrating Social and Emotional Development and College- and Career-Readiness Standards

The Aspen Institute

“It has become more commonly understood that success in college and in the workplace requires not just academic knowledge and ability but also SED [social-emotional development] skills such as persistence, interpersonal skills, and self-control.”

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Social-Emotional Skills in Early Childhood Support Workforce Success: Why Business Executives Want Employees Who Play Well with Others

ReadyNation and Council for a Strong America

“The pipeline to a successful workforce depends on children of all backgrounds having academic and social-emotional skills that are vital to the economy.”
—Jack Brennan, Chairman Emeritus, former CEO, and Senior Advisor, Vanguard

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